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Pedagogy /
Mahara for school administration

Ralph Ballier's profile picture
Posts: 2

05 December 2013, 9:10 AM

I am head of a school. I want to encourage each student all the important documents for him in the portfolio. So, for example, certificates, reports and other papers. All personal documents that are incurred in attending school for him. In school, more than 400 students. Is that possible?
Thank you

Dirk Meyer's profile picture
Posts: 423

08 December 2013, 4:43 AM

Hi Ralph,

Mahara is well suited for this. One of its strong features is that it provides each user the ability to keep certain things completely private while other parts can be easily shared with others or the world. If I was a head of schools, my choice would be mahara for providing each student and staff with a place for doing exactly what you seem to be wanting to do.
You might however want to think about including potentialy very private information such as funding codes or special education data and not have that in a eportfolio system.
If you have a look at some of the past newsletters found under 'News', I am sure you can see some ways how people use the software.

Ralph Ballier's profile picture
Posts: 2

09 December 2013, 1:26 AM

Hi Dirk,

thank you for this positive response. That gives me courage to think in this direction.

Perhaps even a little question to avoid any misunderstanding. I did not mean the possibility that students pass themselves publicly or privately their digital documents. I meant, rather, whether it is technically possible that I provide (or the Secretariat) the student individual documents in their account.

To give a comparison: my bank put a monthly account statement directly into my bank account.



Gideon Williams's profile picture
Posts: 108

09 December 2013, 9:28 AM

Agree with all that Dirk has said. Whats more I would encourage you to start as early as possible with students so that by the time they require the documents and their eportfolio to move ot the next stage of their education then they have a mature, reviewed and hopefully highy effective body of evidence.

Having Mahara eportfolios as part of your school system will enable students to place much greater importance and relevance on the work they produce and store. Students will also take greater ownership of their work as they may present the information in a format and manner they have helped design.

Encouraging students to share their page on a regular basis with students and parents in 1-1 review sessions will improve communcation between school, parent and student and make the student further aware of just how important this can be.

You may wish to get in touch with Solent University who are pioneering work in the UK about eportfolios and inviting employer to view then as part of a careers fair.

Aaron Wells's profile picture
Posts: 896

13 December 2013, 11:50 AM

Hi Ralph,

I think the only way, through the UI, for the admin to upload files into another user's Files area, would be to use the "masquerade" functionality to login as that user, and then upload the file while logged in as them. Which could be a little tedious when you're dealing with lots of users.

On the other hand, there are a few different ways you can share content with just one user:

  • You could create a separate Mahara group for each user, with only the user and their admin as members, and have the admin upload files there.
  • Or, the Admin could create a separate Page for each user in the Admin's Portfolio area. Attach the necessary files to that Page, and then share the Page with only the one user.

Of course these are all manual processes, which again could be tedious to do with 400 users. If you wanted to do it automatically, in bulk, you'd need to write some scripts to pipeline the stuff from whatever system is generating the documents, which would probably not be too difficult, as programming tasks go.



Ralph Ballier's profile picture
Posts: 33

15 December 2013, 11:52 AM

Hi Aaron,

I think it's a good idea to form a common group or to share a page with each user.
You write that the admin has to do this. Must be the admin? Each user can still form a group with others.

You write that it is possible to create scripts. What programming language should I use for this?




Kristina Hoeppner's profile picture
Posts: 3395

15 December 2013, 5:11 PM

Hello Ralph,

In addition to what Aaron wrote, you can also upload files for students as part of feedback you give on their portfolio pages.

If you go with the option of sharing files via a group, you can set up the group as admin (or depending on your settings also as regular user) and then the group admin or in some cases, e.g. if the group is an open group, also group members, can upload files. If you share files via a group, you do not necessarily need to put the files into a portfolio page as group members could download the files directly from the group's files area.




Ralph Ballier's profile picture
Posts: 33

23 December 2013, 5:20 AM

Hello Kristina,

thanks for your help.




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